Author: kwoyafaginmaples

  • 3 Ways to Demystify Writing

    1) Know this: there is no such thing as writer’s block. There is you, in front of your screen or holding a notebook on your lap, typing or moving the pen over the page. This can always happen. Even if you don’t know the direction the work is going. Even if you feel like every […]

  • (Un)naming

    Fagin. First of all, I’m not even sure it’s an accurate last name. I don’t know who my biological grandfather is. (Not going to go looking, either.) My biological grandmother, Annie Ruth, gave birth to six children.  Five of them, including my biological father, were raised by her older sister, Dorothy Lorena Davis, who I […]

  • Elegy

    Just look at her. My grandmother, Dorothy Lorena Davis, was– as Maya Angelou would say– my “rainbow in the clouds.”  I know this is what so many of our grandmothers did for us. She saw me, made me feel recognized and she waited for me to see the same things she did.

  • Reading from Mend

    Yesterday I had a reading at the University of North Alabama.  Suffice it to say, the subject matter of my book is difficult. Mend tells the story of the birth of gynecology and the role black slave women played in that process. The collection is made up of persona poems, and the women’s stories are […]

  • How to Prepare to Read Your Work for an Audience

    I still remember the first time I read my own work in front of a group of people. I was 21. It was at an open-mic at the University of Alabama called “Common Ground.” The poem I was reading was about domestic violence.

  • #TooBusytoWrite

    I’m a writer, creative writing instructor, wife and mother of three young children. Currently, every weekday there are 17 tasks that have to be accomplished for my family life alone.

  • Write Your Book in 2019

    If you are afraid of writing something bad, you may never write.

  • When You’re a Writer Who’s Not Writing

    There was a time you actually called yourself a “real writer.” You took every opportunity to write. You were desperate, at any time of day or night to get to your notebook. Maybe you slept with it next to your bed so you could write your dreams and thoughts immediately. You were an active lover of […]

  • Writing Life: How to Deal with Rejection

    Re-submit as tears of sadness are still drying on your cheeks.

  • Mend: Why It Took Six Years

    Two weeks ago I shared the news that my book, MEND, was accepted for publication by University Press of Kentucky.